First Time Home Buyers’ Guide: Red Flags to Look For

Did you know that in 2020 alone, over 842,000 houses in the US got sold?

When it comes to real estate, as in life, if something appears to be too good to be true, it most likely is.

Any first-time home buyer in Texas has possibly come across a listing for sale that looks fantastic and is priced so low that it’s almost unbelievable. So, what is the catch?

There’s usually a good reason why you have to ask yourself, “What makes this house so cheap?”

Here are some of the most common red flags to look for in real estate listings, hidden under that unusually low asking price.

Potential Structural Problems

Correcting the house foundation is the most expensive repair. The foundation is the most vital part of the house. It can cost you thousands of dollars to repair.

Also, structural repairs that involve health and safety can delay your house loan. That is because they make the property ineligible for financing.

Potential structural problems make the house unsafe. Check for cracks in the house foundation.

Minor cracks are not that alarming. But major cracks are a sign of structural problems with the house foundation.

If you cannot check the foundation, look at the door frames in the entire house. If the frames are not square, or the door has difficulty closing, the house has some structural problems that need addressing.

The best route to evaluate your new home is to hire a structural engineer to inspect the house.

Random Fresh Paint

Painting a room is a cheap process of making it feel fresh and clean. It is a nice way to prepare a home on a budget. A realtor will advise most homeowners to repaint their home before a sell-off.

The painting is to cover up any prior damages. When doing a home walkthrough, you notice potions of the wall with fresh paint; that’s a sure red flag.

Why paint a small part of the ceiling? Why paint only one wall?

That should be a cause of concern because probably the owner is trying to cover up a problem with the house.

Unprofessional Workmanship and Repairs

Many homeowners are capable of performing quality repairs around their homes. But, this is not always the case. Most owners perform DIY projects, so look for amateur quality when house viewing.

It’s very necessary to be on the lookout for flipped properties. The flipped property receives repairs from flippers who don’t have the qualifications to complete the task properly.

Some of the unprofessional works to check for include carpentry, plumbing, and electrical work. In addition, look at the condition of the trim work, faucets, and toilets.

Electrical System Issues

Depending on how old the home is, there are likely some electrical issues. A home buyer needs to view electrical issues as a red flag. Old homes might still have older electrical panels with fuses.

They might also have knob and tube wiring, which will cause major problems.

You don’t have to be a professional electrician to notice these red flags. Turn on the light switches. Then, check the rooms for flickering lights. Qualified home inspectors will inspect and test the entire electrical panel for safety concerns.

Two common findings after a home inspection are electrical raiser cable issues and improper wiring in the entire house.

Pests and Insect Problems

Depending on the property’s geographical location, there are certain pests and insects you have to look for in the home. Severe pest problems are sure red flags.

Pests like wood-destroying pests will damage the home. That may cost thousands of dollars to rectify.

Look out for termites, carpenter ants, and powder post beetles. When a home inspector finds signs of pests or insects, it is possible to have the owner fix that before buying a new home.

At times pest infestation means significant property discounts. That is appealing to most buyers. But eradicating certain bugs is very toxic, complicated, and costly. It at times needs you to vacate the house during fumigation.

It is fairly inexpensive to have a pest inspection. The cost will be worth it because the problems the pests and insects cause will be significant to correct.

Poor Overall Neighborhood Condition

If you happen to be a first-time home buyer in Texas, always remember that you are not only buying the structure’s land. You are also buying the neighborhood. Another red flag is to see if the home neighborhood is in poor condition.

Check for boarded-up properties and the number of vacant properties within the neighborhood. If the number of vacant properties is high, that is a sure red flag. Choosing the right neighborhood is not easy. But, it is very important.

Purchasing a home in a decreasing neighborhood or one with many crimes is a costly mistake. As a first-time buyer, you are likely not to think about the resell of the house because you don’t own it yet. Buying such property will likely create future problems, especially during resell.

As a Home Buyer, Lookout for the Above Red Flags

It’s critical to check for the above red flags before making that important purchase as a home buyer.

While it may be possible to find these issues during the home viewing, they are more likely to come up during a home inspection. That is why it’s vital to have a professional property inspection.

At Granbury Realty, we connect prospective homeowners with quality real estate. Our team of professionals will offer the expertise you need to get the best house deals.

Contact us today to gain help with your real estate needs.

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